November 2006


BoA will be on this week’s edition of Talk Asia on CNN International! … Continue reading

 
Roomba in docking station

Roomba in docking station

Cleaning your home can be satisfying but it’s also very very boring. I’ve estimated that I have to vacuum my apartment at least two times a week (preferably more often) to keep it tidy. I’m way too lazy to do that. This is where the Roomba enters the picture. It’s a robotic vacuum cleaner that offers to do the dirty work for you. The Roomba has its limitations but I’m glad I bought it. … Continue reading

 
Polar F6

I bought a Polar F6 pulse watch (you know, one of those things that checks your heart rate that you can use when you work out) today. I went to my regular Body Balance practice expecting it to be in my “moderate” heart rate zone. OK, I’ve been ill, but during most exercises I was in my “hard” zone and in “moderate” when relaxing or stretching between the exercises. It’ll be interesting to see if this changes as my cardio gets better.

The thing that impressed me the most about this watch was a very small detail. You can download your own logos! You download a wav-file and play it with the watch next to the speaker. *chirp-chirp-chirp* and then you have a Hello Kitty logo on your watch :D

If you have the watch then you can get it at Polar’s site, but here it is anyway (if you have another watch model, then check Polar’s site):

(You go go to the settings menu and when it says “Settings” you play the wav-file with the watch next to your speaker. It will say uplink failed or uplink OK. If OK, hold “back” and then hold up arrow to show the logo.)

You can also download a program to make your own logos, but I haven’t tried that yet.

 

New in the gallery are some BoA wallpapers that I found the other day. Plus an Ai Otsuka picture. Enjoy! :)

  • Missha wallpaper
  • Missha wallpaper
  • Missha wallpaper
  • Missha wallpaper

… Continue reading

 
Secret

November 29th Ayumi Hamasaki’s new album Secret is coming out. I must admit that I haven’t been as “in to” Ayu as before this past year. I haven’t even heard all the singles and I found a couple of the songs that I have heard pretty poor. The good news is that this is a full length album which means it contains some brand new songs. It also comes (as previous Ayu albums) with a DVD with all PVs and “making of”. I’m actually quite excited about this album (more than I expected).

I really like the cover of Secret! I might even get the CD+DVD+Poster version (hoping that the poster is the same as the CD+DVD cover).

And then in January BoA’s next Japanese album and Ai Otsuka’s next concert DVD is coming out! I noticed today that the SEK has grown much stronger against the USD, so it’s time to shop shop shop! :D

Update: the covers of the CD+DVD and CD only version

  • Secret CD+DVD cover
  • Secret CD cover

Credit for the pictures: darc_aqua@aho

Update: I updated the links since the cheaper Hong Kong version is now available for pre-order

 

Finally there are some previews of Ayu’s 2007 calendar! It looks very nice. Much better than BoA’s in my opinion. I think I’ll be ordering this one. The only picture that doesn’t really do it for me is the September-October one. She had a similar picture in her 2005 calendar and I didn’t particularly like that either.
But this means trouble for me. I was thinking about replacing my BoA calendar with an Ai Otsuka poster, but now this Ayu calendar would be perfect there as well :)

  • 2007 calendar cover
  • 2007 calendar january-february
  • 2007 calendar march-april
  • 2007 calendar may-june
  • 2007 calendar july-august
  • 2007 calendar september-october
  • 2007 calendar november-december
  • 2007 calendar

Credit: akane5749@ayuchina & blue_bird@ahn

Buy it here

 

I bought myself a PlayStation2 last week (yay!) as more or less of an impulse buy. The trick was to connect it to my “entertainment centre”. I put that within quotes since it’s not a home theatre system or anything. It’s just an old TV, a VCR, a DVD player and my very old stereo system. I’ve connected my computer to the VCR (my old TV didn’t support SCART) and I’ve connected the audio out of both the VCR and the DVD player to the AUX in on my stereo using the same cable (don’t kill me audio enthusiasts!).

I connected the PS2 audio to the same cable too. I expected some audio degradation, but it sounded fine… until I put the PS2 in stand-by mode and started the latest episode of Heroes on my PC. There was no sound at all! It turns out that the PS2 cancels out all sound on the cable when it’s in stand-by mode. If it’s on or if it’s turned off completely (by disconnecting the power cable) the sound is fine.

I really should get an audio switcher (or a new system all together), but I chose the easy/cheap solution and connected the PS2 to its own power cable with a switch on it so that I can cut the power when I’m not using it. Well, the easiest way is to get the sound via the SCART, but I prefer to have the sound from the stereo speakers over having the sound through the TV.

 

The past two weeks I haven’t been feeling all that well. I’ve been ill (still going to work though) and down in general, but something that has picked me up and kept me going is Ai Otsuka’s song Frienger. Listening to it puts me in such a good mood.

I love the cover of the CD+DVD version of the single (below). I’m using it as the wallpaper on my work cellphone so I can glimpse down on it whenever I’m starting to feel down again.

Frienger CD+DVD cover

I’ve made a PlayStation Portable version of the PV so that you can bring it with you and watch it whenever you want to. I’ve also uploaded a bigger version of the PV as well as a version with English subtitles.

Frienger PSP Frienger PV for PSP (4′36″ 24MB)

(download)

(how to play)

FriengerFrienger PV (4′36″ 75MB)

(download)
(rapidshare mirror)

Frienger subtitledFrienger PV subtitled (4′35″ 83MB)

(download)

(rapidshare mirror)

I’ll keep the videos online as long as my bandwidth permits it. Use the mirrors if you can.

Of course you’ll also need the MP3, which also happens to be my current ringtone at work :)

I hope you enjoy this song as much as I do and that it will make you happier when you listen to it! Don’t forget to purchase the CD if you like the song (how could you not like it?).

 

Note: this information lives in the FAQ these days.

I sometimes post videos for the PlayStation Portable on this site. This is how you play them. … Continue reading

 

It’s actually been a while since I last ordered anything online. Well, unless you count the iRobot Roomba robovac I ordered a few weeks ago (review coming up). At least it’s been a while since I bought anything J-Pop related.

Renai Shashin poster

I’ve always wanted a nice Ai Otsuka poster to put somewhere in my apartment. And now they finally have one for sale at YesAsia. It’s a very nice Renai Shashin promo poster with many small polaroid photos of Ai. I just ordered it. I was about to order some more stuff, but I restrained myself :) . I’m not sure where I’ll place it yet. It all depends on wheter or not I find a nice 2007 calendar (i.e. if Ayu’s is nice). Perhaps my Aya Ueto poster will have to go. I’m even thinking about framing it to make it look a bit more sophisticated.

I’ve also been looking into getting some nice art (either a painting or a poster/reproduction). I love one painting in the movie Daisy, as I’ve written earlier, which is sort of impressionist style, so I’ve been looking at Monet’s work to see if there’s something fitting. It’s the correct style, but I haven’t found the motive (or rather, feeling) I’m looking for.

As I’ve started writing I might as well continue a little more :)

I bought a skipping rope the other day as an impulse buy after a character on Battlestar Galactica was going to skip rope. I’ve never been good at skipping rope, but I gave it a try and quickly realized that a skipping rope has quite a range when it went *smack* *rrritch* and it ripped one of my posters. I have to be more careful when I get the Ai poster, I suppose.

I have no idea how I ended up there, but I found a page describing the Combat Conditioning method used and promoted by Matt Furey. I remember downloading his videos once upon a time, but I deleted them before I had watched them (this was back when I had a lot less harddrive space than today). I tried some of his exercises tonight just to get a feeling for them. I did a few “hindu squats” (I don’t know, perhaps 20-30) and thought “hey, this isn’t too bad”, but then when I started walking around I felt how much it had taken out of my thighs. I’m going to give this method a try.